Lempens: 'Iranian demonstrators are the real heroes'

25 June 2009

Lempens: 'Iranian demonstrators are the real heroes'

“While we're here talking about democracy and human rights, hundreds of thousands of Iranian citizens are risking their lives struggling for these rights," said SP Member of Parliament Paul Lempens during today's emergency debate in the Council of Europe on the dramatic developments in Iran. “The demonstrators are the real heroes," he added. "They deserve our support in their fight against the mullahs.”

Paul LempensLempens' maiden speech on behalf of the United European Left in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), received broad support from speakers from other political groups. PACE adopted a resolution calling on the mullah regime to abjure further violence against the demonstrators and release those arrested, whether ordinary citizens, journalists or politicians. The resolution also calls for consultation with the democratic forces in Iran and an independent enquiry into abuses in an electoral process which has led to the biggest ever protests against a tyranny which has now lasted thirty years.

Lempens went on to warn, however, that other countries must not attempt to misuse the Iranian protests to further their own interests. He pointed to US and British interference which in 1953 led to the downfall of democratically elected Premier Mohammed Mossadeq, following which Iran was first saddled with thirty years of dictatorship under the pro-Western Shah, then with an equally long-lived dictatorial regime of mullahs.

Lempens ended his speech with the old cry, "Their struggle is our struggle. That's what we call international solidarity.”

You are here